Reconciling With An Ex: What To Do Before, During, And After

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How to get your ex back: it's a question many people ask themselves right after a breakup. You may be determined, resolved in your goal to change yourself and become more appealing. Or you may be almost vengeful, hell bent on showing your ex exactly what they are missing. Then there’s the chance you are simply at your wit's end, desperate to know how to get your ex back because you're sure in your heart that they are the love of your life. You know that if you don't get them back you'll never get over it.

Whatever your reason for wanting to know how to get your ex back, there's good news and bad news. On the bright side, there's a solid chance you will be reunited and it will feel great: most relationships are salvageable, no matter how horrid the breakup and how many feelings were hurt in the process. On the less bright side, getting back with an ex isn't easy: it takes time and—above all—effort. You have to be willing to change and that's not always easy.

So, how do you manage this? How do you convince the one that got away to get back on the hook for one more rock of the boat?

There are—of course—no guarantees, but you can increase your odds of the happily-ever-after by knowing what to do before, during and after a reconciliation.

How to Get Your Ex Back: Before You Begin
Prior to reigniting an old flame—or a flame that is still smoldering—the number one thing you must do is ask yourself why. Why do you want him or her back? Your answer to this question can help you decide whether or not it's smart to proceed. Wanting your ex back because you fear growing old alone with a house full of cats is not a good reason for reconciliation. Wanting your ex back because you genuinely love them and think that you can truly work things out is.

How to Get Your Ex Back: During the Quest
After you're sure you're reuniting for the right reasons, it's time to put your plan into action. In general, there are three keys to this. The first is to give your ex time to come back to you: don't act desperate, or guilt or threaten them into reconciling. Don't call them every day, and when they ask for space, have the respect to grant them it. The second key is to change: something went wrong the first time around, so remedy the part of yourself that contributed to your relationship's downfall—and yes, you had a part in that downfall. The final key is to show your ex that you have changed: as every American politician has proven to the nation, words are not enough. Actions will always speak so much louder. Thus, don't merely sit your ex down for a Power Point presentation of ways you've improved, actually show her through what you do and what you don't.

How to Get Your Ex Back: After the Reconciliation
After you've gotten your ex back, your goal is to keep them back; there's little point in reconciling if it's only going to last as long as a Rob Schneider sitcom. Remember, retaining someone's love can be like keeping a job: if you slack off, you're likely to be replaced by someone willing to put in the work. Perhaps the number one way to prove to your girlfriend or boyfriend that you want the second time in the ring to be the time that goes an endless number of rounds is to let go of the past entirely...at least the bad times. Don't bring up the fact that your ex did this or said this three years ago. Bringing up the past will only prevent you from moving into the future, ultimately landing you and your partner into a familiar situation, a familiar pile of muck: calling it quits yet again.

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